Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Isn't She Loaf-ly?

A while back, I had to buy a new breadmaker. My old Proctor-Silex model was sadly kaput after years of overuse, and had to be replaced. Last summer, Canadian Tire had a good sale on a popular model, so I caved - grudgingly. It took me a good two months to even be able to put my old breadmaker out at the curb. I mainly used the dough cycle, but once, I decided to test out the whole 'horizontal' loaf thing with one of my whole wheat recipes. I didn't have time to wait a long time, so without reading the instructions, I used the 'rapid bake' cycle. The loaf did not turn out well. It was very lopsided. I thought this had something to do with the fact that I used a 1 1/2 pound recipe for a 2 pound machine, so I made a note to self to follow the instructions for the larger loaf next time.

So next time rolled around last night. At 8pm, I decided to make me a loaf of bread. I followed the instructions in my cookbook for the 2 pound version, and got all set to turn on the bread machine. I then remembered that I had to select a setting. That's when I pulled out the cryptic breadmaker instructions (worst instructions ever). I then read that I can only use the 'rapid bake' cycle (1 hour 10 minutes) for ONLY the recipes in the book (of which there are two). I guess that's a useless cycle! My only other option was the 'grain' setting (4 hours 10 minutes). As it was already after 8pm, there was no way that I was going to wait until after midnight to pull that sucker out of the machine to avoid it getting soggy. So I used the delay timer (again, I was reminded at how crappy the instructions were), and decided to set it for 6am this morning.

I was eagerly anticipating my loaf - after all, I used the proper amount of ingredients (2 pound recipe) and the correct setting ('grain' instead of 'rapid bake'). When I woke up this morning, I could smell the faint scent of fresh bread. I opened my bedroom door and ran downstairs to find this:

I may have well just used the 'rapid bake' setting with the darn 1 1/2 pound recipe as the results were nearly the same :(

While on a bread kick, I decided to try a recipe that piqued my curiosity a few weeks ago. I have never tried one of those spinach dips served in a pumpernickel loaf, but found a vegan spinach dip recipe in Extraveganza that didn't seem to call for any hydrogenated Tofutti products. It sounded good! So I mixed this up for a snack, but it turned into my dinner.

It was pretty darn good! I tried serving it (to myself - so sad) in the carved out loaf, but I think my ratio of loaf to dip was off, so it didn't seem very full. Ah well - it tasted good. I can't wait to get nice and close to the co-workers tomorrow, as this recipe had three cloves of garlic.

Speaking of co-workers, they might overlook my hideous breath - I had extra filling leftover from my first batch of Boston Cream Cupcakes, so I made a second batch. I'm bringing some into work tomorrow to try and improve my popularity among the team (and partially because I don't want to get stuck at home alone with 12 cupcakes). The icing was a bit runnier today...come to think of it - maybe I should taste-test one from this batch...I'll go do that now. I was just about to get on the elliptical anyways...

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